Donald Trump

Donald Trump and Ben Carson Go Full NIMBY in The Wall Street Journal

The Trump administration has abandoned its own promising housing reforms in favor of toxic culture war politics.

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Few political transformations have been more remarkable to witness than Ben Carson's constant ping-ponging on housing policy. The Housing and Urban Development (HUD) secretary can't seem to make up his mind about whether loosening restrictions on new housing development is a great idea the federal government should encourage or a left-wing plot to destroy the American Dream.

On Sunday, The Wall Street Journal published a joint op-ed by Carson and President Donald Trump in which the two warned that eliminating single-family zoning would import urban dysfunction into thriving suburban communities.

"A once-unthinkable agenda, a relentless push for more high-density housing in single-family residential neighborhoods, has become the mainstream goal of the left," the article says. "We will save our cities, from which these terrible policies have come, and we will save our suburbs."

They go on to criticize the elimination of single-family zoning in Minneapolis and Oregon, as well as heretofore unsuccessful efforts by California state Sen. Scott Wiener (D–San Francisco) to preempt local zoning regulations to allow five-story apartments near job centers and transit lines.

The op-ed represents a marked change from the views expressed by Carson in 2018, when he told the Journal that he intended to update federal fair housing rules to encourage the same kind of high-density construction he's now criticizing.

"I want to encourage the development of mixed-income multifamily dwellings all over the place," Carson said then, saying that he would "incentivize people who really would like to get a nice juicy government grant" to reform their zoning codes.

Sunday's op-ed brings Carson's housing views back to where they were in 2015, when the then–presidential candidate was criticizing an Obama-era fair housing rule for stepping on the toes of local communities' zoning powers.

"The rule would fundamentally change the nature of some communities from primarily single-family to largely apartment-based areas by encouraging municipalities to strike down housing ordinances that have no overtly (or even intended) discriminatory purpose—including race-neutral zoning restrictions on lot sizes and limits on multi-unit dwellings, all in the name of promoting diversity," wrote Carson in The Washington Times, comparing such changes to failed socialist experiments.

To quote Homer Simpson: "Some people never change. Or, they quickly change and then quickly change back."

Carson's constantly shifting stripes on housing policy represent a broader schizophrenia within the Trump administration. Its efforts to encourage the rollback of predominately local regulations on housing development have given way to toxic culture-war rhetoric about saving the suburbs.

A good marker of the administration's changing tune is its update of the Obama administration's 2015 Affirmatively Furthering Fair Housing (AFFH) rule.

That rule—which required jurisdictions receiving federal housing grants to report on obstacles to fair housing and then propose remedies for eliminating those obstacles—has long been a target of conservative criticism for being overly burdensome, overly prescriptive, and ultimately ineffective. It's what Carson was criticizing as a threat to single-family zoning in his 2015 Washington Times op-ed.

His 2018 interview in The Wall Street Journal, by contrast, was about wanting to change the AFFH rule so its reporting requirements did a better job of spotlighting how single-family zoning worsened affordability.

In January 2020, the Trump administration issued a proposed replacement AFFH rule that aimed to do just that. It asked HUD grantees to report on a few narrow measures of housing affordability and housing quality, and then propose three policies for improving those metrics. The January rule also held out the possibility that jurisdictions who saw their affordability metrics improve would be rewarded with additional grant money.

This wasn't a full-fledged free market approach—the government was still attaching strings to grant programs that probably shouldn't exist in the first place. Still, it at least had the potential to encourage localities to adopt their own market reforms.

But in July, when the Trump administration released a final AFFH replacement rule, it explicitly criticized the January proposal as federal overreach and instead promised to preserve local government control above all else. Meanwhile, the federal grants will continue to flow.

The new Trump-Carson op-ed touts the July rule as an example of Trump's commitment to safeguarding the suburbs.

As other commenters have pointed out, it's clear that Trump has become convinced that casting himself as a defender of suburban America, à la Nixon 1968, is the path to electoral success. The new op-ed should be read in that light.

This change in rhetoric and tune is not only disappointing on policy grounds; it's probably strategically mistaken. By abandoning the fight against restrictive zoning laws, Trump and Carson are forfeiting their ability to call out the progressive hypocrisy on housing policy. By maintaining restrictions on new housing construction, many liberal urban areas and their suburban satellites perpetuate the economic inequality and racial segregation that their politicians decry.

Instead of calling this out, Trump and Carson are defending the development regulations of deep-blue suburbs whose residents hate the idea of another four years of Trump in the White House almost as much as they hate the prospects of another four units of housing in their neighborhood.

Carson and Trump are not wrong when they write that "decades of liberal governance have tragically made many urban cities unaffordable." A major reason for some liberal cities' high housing costs is their hostility to new development.

Likewise, when the two say they "believe the suburbs offer a wonderful life for Americans of all races and backgrounds when they are allowed to grow organically, from the bottom up," that would seem to forestall support for regulations that require suburban communities to forever remain exclusively single-family neighborhoods.

It is true that the federal government shouldn't be dictating local land-use decisions. Reforming the zoning codes that drive up the price of housing and drive out working- and middle-class residents is something that state and local governments will ultimately have to tackle. A good way to reduce the federal role in local housing policy would be to eliminate the housing and transportation grant programs that give the feds leverage over local regulations.

But rather than push the idea of spending cuts, Carson and Trump are arguing that the federal government should continue to provide funding to local communities without any consideration for how they spend that money, or for whether local regulations conflict with the purposes of those federal grant programs. In doing so, they are embracing harmful housing regulations.

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  1. Wouldn’t it be nice if the feds stayed out of local housing issues? Yes, I know I am dreaming….

    1. Yes, it would. It’s not like the average plot of land doesn’t have three or more levels of government already controlling its usage.

      1. Which addresses the issue how?
        And again, why are you hiding from you rep? I have to assume you are embarrassed by your former posts, or you wouldn’t have chosen to change handles.
        What idiocy are you hoping to hide?

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    2. Britschgi doesn’t consider the idea, that Carson/Trump now believe they’re better off not starting federal control of zoning laws? There will be a time in the future, when regulations changed via EO, will be changed by EO again. So not fighting to implement federal laws over zoning, means less federal regulation of local zoning. It’s a reasonable position IMHO. This way, NIMBY people that “hate the prospects of another four units of housing in their neighborhood” will place the blame on the local government instead of the feds.

      Which brings up the question as to whether or not and how, “Donald Trump and Ben Carson Go Full NIMBY”. Trump is giving states and local governments freedom to do zoning the way they want, rather than a single federal solution. Why is this Trump going NIMBY? Is there a more libertarian solution? Perhaps abolishing zoning in favor of deed restrictions but then what restrictions. Or perhaps abolishing zoning and allowing property owners to do what they want provided they don’t affect other adjacent properties which will lead to a lot of litigation.

      Britschgi thankfully does offer a more libertarian solution: stopping grants to local governments as bribes to change their policy: the next president might use those bribes to have them change their policy to something less libertarian.

  2. I quit working at shoprite and now I make $65-85 per/h. How? I’m working online! My work didn’t exactly make me happy so I decided to take a chance on something new…CDe after 4 years it was so hard to quit my day job but now I couldn’t be happier.

    Here’s what I do………….>> Click here

  3. If you need to cite the NYT as your authoritative source Britschgi, you lost.

  4. For most Americans their home is by far their biggest investment. Anything that might threaten that investment, like low-income housing next door, or a drug rehab outpatient site on the next block can, and probably will, wipe out a lot of the resale value.
    If you don’t have a home at risk, then this just looks like greedy people denying others the chance to get their own. Look at East Los Angeles though, and you will see Mexican neighborhoods trying to protect what they have as well.
    Trump understands this.

    1. Yes, he Los Angeles sprawl. Because two hour commutes prevents your property values from plummeting when they build a duplex down the street.

      GET THE FUCKING GOVERNMENT OUT OF HOUSING!

      1. I doubt you own a home.

          1. Die in a fire

          2. Ha, Johannes was so right.

        1. I doubt you own a home.

          No, I don’t. And I’d like to be able to afford one, even a modest 1/16 acre one or a condo.

          In a true capitalist society, there are no price guarantees or price supports for anything – food, stocks, or home prices. The overarching purpose of a home is to have a place to live, not to make a government guaranteed profit or guaranteed to break even.

          Food, clothing and shelter are basic needs. We don’t expect to sell our used clothing at a profit or even what we paid for it. And we certainly don’t expect to be able to sell our used food, nonetheless for a profit. So why the fuck is their any reasonable expectation to sell our used home for more more than we paid for it, or even for what we paid for it? We expect to sell a used car for less than we paid for it. How can we not reasonably expect to sell our used home for less than we paid for it, except for government coercion limiting supply and driving up prices.

          There is no right to any character of a neighborhood, unless one owns the whole neighborhood like a proprietary development. One’s property rights end at one’s property line. The home builders’ property rights begin at their property lines.

          Zoning is anti-property rights, anti-capitalist, anti-free enterprise, anti-libertarian, and collectivist.

          1. No libertarian believe property rights in terms of maximizing the value of one’s own property grants you license to destroy the value of another’s property.

            More to the point, the notion that eliminating single family housing in favor of multi family housing is wrong as a matter of basic economics. If you have 50 houses in a neighborhood, and you bulldoze 25 of them to build condos, what does it do to the value of housing? Well, it does two things. First, it reduces the value of housing because your neighborhood is now worse due to the addition of condos. Second, it increases the value of housing because you’ve reduced housing (25 houses is fewer than 50 houses, less of something in an area with constant demand makes it more expensive.) So what happens to the value of your home? Hard to say, actually, depends on whether the reduction in value from making the neighborhood less desirable is more significant than the increase which comes from reducing supply. At least in monetary terms. What is almost certain is that it will make your property less desirable TO YOU if you live there, just as certainly as if they’d knocked down your fence or graffitied your garage door. That’s what zoning laws are for. They are voluntary agreements entered into by small groups of people with common interests in a localized area to prevent bad actors from negatively impacting everyone else. There are other mechanisms than zoning which can accomplish this, but zoning isn’t necessarily a bad one.

            It’s probably also worth pointing out the other problem with doing this in the name of housing affordability, namely that they’re doing it in the wrong place. The suburb I live in has land values of a little over $2m an acre. If you want housing to be affordable, you don’t build it on land that costs $2m an acre, you build it on land that costs $10k an acre, which there is quite a lot of about 80 miles from here.

            If you want to talk about anti-libertarian, using federal power to bust local regulations in order to be able to build housing in the dumbest, most expensive place possible because you can just force taxpayers to pick up the tab is pretty anti-libertarian.

            1. What is almost certain is that it will make your property less desirable TO YOU if you live there, just as certainly as if they’d knocked down your fence or graffitied your garage door.

              I can understand if one bought a house in a particular neighborhood because one liked its character, and then becomes disappointed if the character changes not to one’s liking. The solution to that is to buy in a proprietary development.

              The challenge of a free, especially libertarian, society is tolerance. I may not like what someone says, even find it offensive. But, I have to respect the person’s right to say it. Likewise, I may not like what a neighbor builds one his or her property, but I have to respect the neighbor’s property rights to build it.

            2. …grants you license to destroy the value of another’s property.

              No one has any right to any specific value of one’s property. What people are willing to pay determines that. If somone’s non-coercive actions lower the value of neighbors property, so be it. Building multifamily is not using force to prevent buyers from paying more for adjacent properties.

              Hard to say, actually, depends on whether the reduction in value from making the neighborhood less desirable is more significant than the increase which comes from reducing supply.

              Actually, overall supply would be increased, so overall price would come down. Part of the market are people who just want a place to live even if it’s not single-family. They’d be more than happy to have a condo or small lot if it’s less expensive than large lot single-family. So the demand for single-family large lot won’t necessarily stay up. Plus, there would be renters more than happy to not have their rents increase quite so much because of increase in supply.

              If you want housing to be affordable, you don’t build it on land that costs $2m an acre, you build it on land that costs $10k an acre, which there is quite a lot of about 80 miles from here.

              Who wants to drive 80 miles each way to and from work? The population naturally increases. There’s no reasonable expectation that a neighborhood will remain single-family forever anywhere near an urban center or the surrounding suburbs.

          2. That’s a lot of bullshit when “No, I don’t.” would have sufficed.

            1. No, it’s a lot of libertarian wisdom. I decided to take the opportunity to dispel some anti-libertarian myths.

            2. Do you think you have a right to not have your property values decrease?
              Honest question.

              I can see an argument for the land value increasing over time as land IS a finite resource. But the idea that the house appreciates over time when everything else that we use depreciates, seems ridiculous on its face.

              1. Small-government ideologues don’t want to sacrifice one dime of the government benefits they get. It’s why nobody takes them seriously. It’s why they invent convoluted justifications for everything they have despite telling everyone else they’re not entitled to theirs.

              2. …grants you license to destroy the value of another’s property.

                No one has any right to any specific value of one’s property. What people are willing to pay determines that. If somone’s non-coercive actions lower the value of neighbors property, so be it. Building multifamily is not using force to prevent buyers from paying more for adjacent properties.

                Hard to say, actually, depends on whether the reduction in value from making the neighborhood less desirable is more significant than the increase which comes from reducing supply.

                Actually, overall supply would be increased, so overall price would come down. Part of the market are people who just want a place to live even if it’s not single-family. They’d be more than happy to have a condo or small lot if it’s less expensive than large lot single-family. So the demand for single-family large lot won’t necessarily stay up. Plus, there would be renters more than happy to not have their rents increase quite so much because of increase in supply.

              3. Do you think you have a right to not have your property values decrease?

                No. No more than I have a right to cheap rent or a “living wage”. The free-market will decide the rightful price, i.e. what a buyer is willing to freely pay.

                One might argue that putting up multi-family apartments in the neighborhood would it less desirable and lead to buyers only willing to pay a depressed price for one’s single-family home. To which I would say two things – probably not and tough shit.

                Multi-family housing is usually more profitable per acre than single family. So, the property values are probably not going to decrease – developers would pay.

                I say tough shit because in a free-market, one has property rights to build multi-family on one’s own land and one cannot force someone to buy or sell at a price they are not willing.

                If one wants a large lot single-family home surrounded exclusively by the same guaranteed forever, then one should buy in a proprietary community.

                1. correction: “…make it less desireable…”

          3. The ability to sell a home for more than it cost, in a stable market, is a sign of value inflation…an attribute usually of government. The increase in price is NOT an indication of increased home value, but a lessening of the value of money.
            Most unfortunately to wish government to get out of zoning, is impossible, there are too many invested it the schemes.

            1. ^^ THIS!

    2. The number one cause of bankruptcy is medical bills. Do you think the government should protect americans from financial hardship from medical bills too?

      1. LOL! You can blame medical bills all you want, but the number one cause of bankruptcy is incompetence.

        1. The “incompetence” of PAYING for the land around a persons house if that person want’s control of it???? Or building on a HOA lot so an association can control it???

          The free-market allows “JUST COMPETENCY” the gov has NO BUSINESS screwing with that.

      2. No it isn’t.

        Bankruptcies usually have medical debt but that is not the primary cause.

        Stop quoting Vox.

        https://www.forbes.com/sites/aparnamathur/2018/04/09/exposing-the-myth-of-widespread-medical-bankruptcies/#4605b18c2a1d

      3. “The number one cause of bankruptcy is medical bills.”

        Everybody needs to read that again; it’s bullshit picked up from some lefty site and trumpeted by brain-dead lefties such as DOL.
        Now, what is the purpose of bankruptcy? Why, it is a sort of a government-backed ‘insurance’ so that an accident or a bad decision doesn’t take food out of your or your family’s mouths.
        And so we have some fucking lefty ignoramus with a new bumper sticker policy directive (and repeated by those of equal lack of intelligence), decrying PEOPLE USING BANKRUPTCY TO PROTECT THEM AS A RESULT OF MEDICAL COSTS!!!!
        The HORROR of that! Why bankruptcy should be reserved for idiots taking ‘studies’ degrees and then working at Starbucks!
        DOL, did your brains leak out after you became a lefty asshole, or was that the proximate cause of your conversion from an intelligent human?

        1. DoL is a “lefty”. Right.

          1. “DoL is a “lefty”. Right.”
            You claim otherwise, given DOL’s posts?
            Please offer at least one cite where DOL is not a lefty.
            Or, STFU.

            1. DoL is also the sock puppet for Chemjeff, who is a self admitted supporter of child rapists moving here from foreign countries, illegally.

          2. Oh, and I also note you didn’t bother to address DOL’s lefty bullshit. You claim some sort of ‘neutrality’, but you also claim to be a long-term commenter here who just decided to change a screen-name, obviously having nothing to do with hiding from your former bullshitting, right?
            That scumbag bigot Misek claims ‘honesty’ in posting a name, but a search shows the Nazi asshole to be hiding under a false name or someone recognized on the web only for posting lies here.
            What’s your excuse, scumbag?

            1. Misek has a sock puppet? Who?

      4. Few have the funds to buy a mansion in which to live, to wear the best clothing or eat the best food, so WHY expect everyone to afford the best healthcare? As better food has enabled many to live longer, more physical (and mental also) more healthcare concerned appear. One sets priorities… One does not force his neighbor to budget for your healthcare.

    3. i think deciding that housing should be an investment is one of the single worst policy issues we have.

      “Housing should be affordable’ and “Housing is how you build wealth” seem….at odds.

      1. They ARE at odds.

        And considering Kelo (fuck Ruth Bader Ginsburg), any property you own is at the pleasure of the state.

      2. It’s a bit out of context.
        Land used to be affordable AND housing was a way to build wealth… in a populace tied to land.

        I mean, imagine buying an empty piece of land and putting a trailer on it. Your kids have a stable home and you work out of the home OR you farm. Profits become savings which go towards building a small house which adds some value to the land. Now it is developed land. Save some more, family grows, add more to the house. Bigger house adds value to the land. Update and upgrade, add more, develop more, add a barn/storage, add a pool…

        Tastefully done over generations, you end up with legacy home farmhouses that, in addition to the land appreciating, is now worth far more than the trailer it started with.

        The way we do land and housing now in HOAs with ready made houses built up by investors, and are not modifiable or come with all upgrades newly built is a new way that is incongruous with the affordable and investment dichotomy.

        1. … Don’t leave out the fact that the Federal Government UNCONSTITUTIONALLY has pretended to own 33% of the US Land of which they have ZERO justified claim to.

          Federal Environmentalism is what really shot land prices into a monopoly market.

      3. “Housing should be more affordable…”, Food would be more affordable and healthcare should be affordable? AND everyone’s skills should be able to demand a higher wage that would make all things more affordable?

        1. Those peoples labors should be “more affordable” (CHEAPER)… Lets pass laws so we can point gov-guns at those people and force them to labor for what we want to pay… Hmmm; Sounds a lot like slavery.

  5. And people still think Republicans are better than Democrats on micromanagement of peoples’ every day lives. “Oh, I’m sorry, giant lots with single family homes only!”

    It’s a fucking local issue, let it be handled at the local level! And ABOLISH the department while you’re at it! Hell, I remember when Republicans wanted to get rid of HUD, not use it to ban duplexes. Fuck.

    1. they are not for banning multiple units they are against requiring multiple units. big difference

      1. It’s still up to the local governments to decides. It’s way out of Trump’s jurisdiction. Federalism, fucking Federalism.

        Abolish HUD, and also abolish all those local housing authortities. Let people build multi-unit or single homes as they want on their own property.

        1. Don’t you get it? These guys only scream federalism when a president has a (D) after their name. They are brainless partisans who think they are too unique to be just another republican, so they call themselves libertarians. Doesn’t make them libertarian, obviously.

          1. …Except a D President tried to force multi unit housing against local wishes.

            The R President is not.

            Saying “You can do what you wish” is, apparently, NOT a Libertarian goal now.

            1. don’t use logic with an idiot like that

            2. No, they’re trying to stop local governments from forcing single-family homes upon developers and people who would be satisfied with a condo, a rental apartment, a subdivided small home.

              Fuck the locals. Them forcing single-family homes coercively denies others any kind of home, by coercively limiting supply.

              One’s property rights end at one’s property line, where others’ property rights begin.

          2. trump isn’t proposing a law fucktard. Obama did. Trump just repealed it. How are you and brandy so Fucking dumb. Is it the TDS?

            1. They didn’t repeal a law. They _replaced_ an administrative rule. It’s like you didn’t bother to read the articles before commenting.

              1. It’s like you think that makes a difference; it doesn’t.
                Again, you claim to have been a long-term ‘resident’, and yet you have chosen a new handle.
                What are you trying to hide from your past? Who were you and why are you trying to hide from your reputation?

                1. Is WK Misek? It would explain the ew handle. Likely referring him riding a horde where a pointed sheet over his head and carrying a lit torch. Ready to burn down the homes of some Jooooossssss.

        2. This is retarded. The people living in these neighborhoods don’t want to be forced to have section 8 housing.

          It became federalized when obama decided he’d force areas to have section 8 housing.

          FORCE as in it wasn’t a local choice. I’ve lived in two of these areas already in the last 15 years. They always end up with higher crime and deteriorating schools.

          You want YOUR idea of the right choice. You don’t actually want it to be a local decision unless the locals decide the same as you.

      2. He probably doesn’t understand the difference between motorcycle helmet laws and seatbelt laws, vs banning seatbelts and helmets

    2. The issue was Obama tried to remove that from the local community while Trump is giving it back to them.

      1. Jeff and brandy are rolling in stupidity.

        1. So that means it’s a day ending in ‘y’.

      2. Then Obama was right. The local communities were coercively violating the property rights of developers, aspiring condo owners, and renters via anti-free enterprise, anti-libertarian zoning laws.

        1. You missed the dependent clause which says otherwise.

          1. And zoning doesn’t violate property rights by coercively restricting what one can build on one’s property?

    3. Thanks for the advice, Brandy and I’ll offer some to you…invest in a dictionary that will allow your use of less uncivil words.

  6. So, Reason is now FOR mandating low-income housing in suburbs.

    How very Libertarian of you

    1. Reason is mostly for orange man bad. If the suburbs have to be destroyed by federal regulation, so be it.

      1. They’re not being destroyed by federal regulation. It’s being “destroyed” by the free market because it’s more profitable to build multi-family. The feds are no longer giving money to localities that use zoning to violate free-market property righrs.

    2. No, it’s against mandating single-family.

  7. “The rule would fundamentally change the nature of some communities from primarily single-family to largely apartment-based areas by encouraging municipalities to strike down housing ordinances that have no overtly (or even intended) discriminatory purpose—including race-neutral zoning restrictions on lot sizes and limits on multi-unit dwellings, all in the name of promoting diversity,” – Ben Carson

    “Removing regulations is NIMBYism” – Britschgi

    Fuck off back to Buzzfeed, you TDS infected concern troll.

  8. I see nothing wrong with their position. I’ve stated before if you require multiple housing then you have pushed the price of housing up not down since not everyone can afford to build multiple houses. I’ve seen this happen. Secondly not everyone wants to be a landlord so those who can build but will never use the extra space so it becomes a waste of materials. allowing the choice is one thing but many places are requiring the home owner to build two units.

  9. It’s not the zoning code that’s the problem, it’s the subsidized housing. NIMBY-ism is when you want the government to do something, but want them to do it somewhere else. I hardly think it’s NIMBY-ism when you want the government not to be doing it at all. Maybe NIABY-ism – Not In Anybody’s Back Yard.

  10. Correct me if I’m wrong, but wanting to encourage developers to do something is fundamentally different from complaining that some municipalities are making single family zoning verbotten.

  11. More twisted words from the trump hating crowd.

  12. It’s like having kids. Non-property owners, like non-parents, just won’t get it till they have it (or them, or…whatever).

    1. Me before buying a house: “OMG the founding fathers only wanted property owners to vote?!? Ugh typical racist white male privilege.”

      Me after buying a house: *spends all day cleaning shotgun and muttering threats at pictures of local government officials*

      1. We all pay property taxes, except for hobos, whether directly or indirectly through higher rents

  13. There’s an empty 180×120 lot behind my home. I should buy it before someone decides to build a 30 story apartment building there.

    1. Which will probably be subsidized for the homeless.

  14. The one thing boomers will fight to the death about is preserving the insanely inflated valuations of their houses.

    1. They’re not inflated. If you sell your home, you will do so at a price mutually agreed upon by buyer and seller.

      Property taxes, on the other hand, are inflated.

      1. A market price is not a free market price. You might be able to convince someone to sell his car to you for $5 by putting a gun to his head and demanding it, but that doesn’t mean that the price was fair in the free market sense.

        The word “free” matters. It is the word that is added when property rights are respected.

        Zoning laws inflate the price of real estate by limiting the property rights of both the owner of the parcel in question and the owners of surrounding land. The price that a parcel sells for in this context is indeed a market price, but it is not the price that a free market would generate.

        1. “The price that a parcel sells for in this context is indeed a market price, but it is not the price that a free market would generate.”

          Which is totally irrelevant.
          The question here is not zoning, it’s whether the feds should allow local government to further regulate housing.

      2. Property taxes are inflated, but the lack of supply distorts the market, no different from rent control

        1. “…but the lack of supply distorts the market, no different from rent control”

          So you want the government to ‘fix’ this by mandating supply? And you claim this *IS* different than rent control?
          You’re on a roll…

          1. Are you serious? How about policies that promote a free market instead of artificially suppressing supply. Crack open your old high school econ textbook, you seem like you might need to brush up on what a free market entails.

            1. “How about policies that promote a free market instead of artificially suppressing supply.”

              How about ‘it’s none of the governments’ business’ to be involved in the supply of housing?

              1. The 14th Amendment allows the feds to prohibit, by approriate legislation, local or state government violation of privileges and immunities or denial of equal protection of the law.

                Zoning violates property rights and treats renters, developers, and homeowners differently thereby denying equal protection.

    2. “The one thing boomers will fight to the death about is preserving the insanely inflated valuations of their houses.”

      Is green your favorite color? Do you presume to ‘know’ the proper pricing of goods on the market?
      Fuck off, slaver.

      1. Please don’t hurt me oh mighty keyboard warrior

        1. Don’t worry; you do yourself enough harm without me lifting a finger.
          Now please add to your record and explain how diamonds should be cheaper than water.
          I’ll wait…

          1. You can’t make phonograph needles out of water. Diamonds are fairly priced.

            1. I had not thought about it from that angle!

  15. Zoning is terrible. Thomas Sowell covers it well:

    https://www.newswars.com/how-government-regulations-make-housing-unaffordable/

    At the same time, we should be wary of becoming bedfellows with the Democrats on this issue. Most of their proposals for zoning changes also included massively taxpayer-subsidized “affordable housing” projects.

    1. The Ds are in no way proposing to end zoning.

  16. “This wasn’t a full-fledged free market approach—the government was still attaching strings to grant programs that probably shouldn’t exist in the first place. Still, it at least had the potential to encourage localities to adopt their own market reforms.”

    Talking about a “full-fledged free market” in the context of zoning laws is ridiculous.

  17. Why does HUD exist? Another bolshevik LBJ department which is clearly unconstitutional

    1. “Why does HUD exist? Another bolshevik LBJ department which is clearly unconstitutional”

      It’s certainly despicable on principle, but, historically, it’s also proven absolutely horrible in utilitarian terms.
      In SF, the area known as “Western Addition” was a lower middle-class area of, largely, single family housing. And largely black ownership; out dated (and not yet fashionable) Victorians. Fillmore St was the major commercial stretch, known for jazz and blues clubs, along with retailing.
      Justin Herman was the local ‘urban planning’ poobah, and the owners were ‘encouraged’ to leave for low-ball prices so he could build ‘stack-a-prole’ high-rises which degenerated into ‘prisons’ where elderly tenants didn’t go into hallways for fear of being robbed; those hallways being un-lighted, sine the bulbs were either shot-out or stolen.
      Those who stayed in SF moved to the SE corner (Bary View and Hunter’s Point), and were further ‘blessed’ with LBJ’s ‘war on poverty’.
      With the predictable result…

  18. This is all pretty confusing and really has no need to be. Cities and counties are funded by property taxes. If you kill your tax base or reduce property value you will end up with debt and failure. Cities that maintain property value are really nice and have a lot of great services. Those that don’t are not. So what is the argument?

    1. More units per acre means each acre has more value and more units to tax.

  19. While the Trump/Carson editorial was certainly full of some rhetoric and maybe some implied policies I was missing; it seemed to argue more AGAINST two things:

    -Mandating multi-family housing
    -prohibiting single family housing

    I don’t see in their editorial where they suggested banning denser building in the suburbs . . .

    1. “I don’t see in their editorial where they suggested banning denser building in the suburbs . . .”

      Yeah, some of these arguments are convoluted enough you have to keep a “+/-” spread-sheet going to track the dependent clauses.
      My read is this:
      The fed (orange man) is not willing to require local governments zone for high-density housing.
      If I’m wrong, please point out where.

  20. We reject the ultraliberal view that the federal bureaucracy should dictate where and how people live. We believe the suburbs offer a wonderful life for Americans of all races and backgrounds when they are allowed to grow organically, from the bottom up.

    Above is a quote from the editorial. How is this Nimby-ism?

  21. There is nothing immoral about protecting the value of the single largest investment of your family’s existence.

    1. By that same logic, there is nothing immoral about using government to stop your competitor from making his product more efficiently, in his factory. It’s a valid opinion, but it’s certainly not libertarian.

    2. Not if it involves violating the property rights of developers to build what they want on their property.

      1. Then it IS immoral.

  22. Creating islands of poverty—mostly in high rise towers— had to be one of the worst, worst federal policies of all time. All housing policies need to be reimagined as most have more unintended consequences than actual incentives. But this appeal to “suburban housewives” as trump likes to call them In his tweets is blatant race and class baiting and is outright sad as a vote garnering strategy

    1. “…But this appeal to “suburban housewives” as trump likes to call them In his tweets is blatant race and class baiting and is outright sad as a vote garnering strategy…”

      I see your TDS is much advanced.

  23. I think COVID has killed high density urbanism for a generation at least. People aren’t going to want to use mass transit and live in large apartment complexes when the next pandemic hits, and it will.

  24. I’m sorry, was this in English, or anything closely related? But your Silicon Valley overlords are doubtless pleased. Fisher, you win a cookie.

    This comment not approved by Silicon Valley brain slugs.

  25. Do libertarians support less federal tyranny, and more local tyranny, or do libertarians support less overall tyranny – whichever legal entity may be the catalyst for that.
    I’m some cases there may be a valid role for the federal government, including when it comes to protecting individuals’ private property rights from restrictions imposed by their local authorities.

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  27. There may be no ground-up invention of American government policy as a) artificial and b) racist as suburbia.

    We’re all agreed that Trump is not blowing his dog whistle too quietly for you people to hear on this, right?

    I think it’s hilarious that he knows he can never go back to New York, where he was a somebody, because he decided to leverage bigoted wretchedness for power. If there’s justice (and there’s probably not), he’ll learn just how scary close quarters with black men can be. But most likely he’ll waddle off to his version of suburbia in Florida where he can only hope to be mistaken for someone on bath salts.

    1. “…just how scary close quarters with black men can be.”

      Interesting. I don’t think any of the several black men who live on my street, in suburbia, one of them right next door, are scary, but I guess I just haven’t been close enough quarters with them.

      1. I don’t think there are any black people in my neighborhood. My city remains quite segregated, however, and I assume it’s not because our blacks wanted it that way

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  31. What the eff has happened to this website? This is yet another article authored by a person without reason. I don’t think the author understands what the acronym NIMBY means.

    Not in my backyard represents the scenario when someone doesn’t follow the golden rule, i.e. advocates for a change that only other people have to live with.

    Since when did Ben Carson or Trump ever advocate for low cost housing in the suburbs? The author took the word “everywhere” in one of Carson’s statements and decided that included suburbs. Using that definition of “everywhere”, Carson also meant the desert and the middle of a lake too.

    But the big issue is government grants (tax revenue) being used to motivate developers to build in areas they could not otherwise afford to build.

    That should have been the focus of this piece.

  32. Strategically, any GOP candidate (even moreso, trump) would have little or nothing to gain from pointing out leftist hypocrisy regarding the actual creation of affordable housing. In the places where the artificial housing shortages have driven the cost of living up to where the “poverty line” income is a six-figure number, the voters are ideologically locked into leftist dogma, and often see the idea of actual market-based solutions to any problem as somewhere between criminal and inherently evil.

    The people who actually face hardships because of those policies live in L.A., S.F, maybe Portland, NYC and other deep-blue strongholds. The people in these cities increasingly believe the rhetoric coming from left-authoritarians like Eric Garcetti, Bernie Sanders, and London Breed is the actual solution, and those who don’t believe it are increasingly moving to Nevada, Colorado, Tennessee, Texas, and other places where it’s actually possible to buy a piece of land and build something on it within the same calendar decade without incurring tens of thousands in permitting/inspection costs as punishment for attempting to increase the local tax base. There’s a small “YIMBY” movement in these places, but not enough to change electoral outcomes, and housing policy is too far down their priorities list to make them overlook social-conservative positions that the GOP generally refuses to back down from.

    1. Generally I’d agree the government has no business in housing. But doesn’t it have a role in protecting people? Niggers are a danger to safety. Ben Carson, a black man, understands this. Keeping niggers with their drugs and pimps and hoes out of our neighborhoods is a must!

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